FORMER Dynamos chairman Simon Makaza has thrown his weight behind Trevor Carelse-Juul to claim the Zifa presidency at this Saturday’s board elections.
SENIOR SPORTS REPORTER
Carelse-Juul will be contesting against incumbent Cuthbert Dube, Harare City chairman Leslie Gwindi and outgoing Zifa board member marketing Nigel Munyati.
Makaza, who worked with Carelse-Juul during his time at Dynamos in the late 1980s, said the current state of local football needs people who are practical in their approach to issues.
“From the four candidates, Juul is the only person who can take us forward. He is a very practical person and I worked with him at Dynamos when I was vice-chairman to Jokoniah Nhekairo,” said Makaza.
“I remember him rejuvenating Dynamos and he is the one who helped the club open the Dynamos Sports shop that was at Fidelity House.
“Carelse-Juul had also secured sponsorship for the construction of a stadium and a shopping mall at the team’s stand that was in Waterfalls. Unfortunately, he left the team before the idea could be implemented as he went to Zifa,” he said.
Carelse-Juul’s campaign is mainly centered on player welfare and development, stemming from his experience as a player, coach and administrator.
The Dream Team’s emergence and success is largely credited to Carelse-Juul whose tenure witnessed handsome player remuneration.
His candidature came as a surprise after over two decades away from Zimbabwean football and his return was inspired by Zimbabwe’s promising future from the African Nations Championships (Chan) tournament in January.
“The team’s performance at Chan in South Africa made me realise that we still have the natural talent we had during the days of George Rollo,” said Carelse-Juul at a Press conference on Saturday.
The former Dynamos coach, however, would have to be at his best to shrug off the challenge of incumbent Dube, who maintains that he still has unfinished business at Zifa. Dube counts the completion of the Zifa Village as one of his major achievements and bringing in Sepp Blatter to support local football. Fifa has, in-turn, funded the Zifa Village, the installation of the artificial turf and promised new headquarters.
Dube’s biggest blemish is the unfinished Asiagate match-fixing scandal where outgoing vice-president Ndumiso Gumede and chief executive officer Jonathan Mashingaidze have again left for Zurich to present their case and seek further funding to pay debts accrued from the exercise.